A college recovers its Christian identity

For much of this century, the waning influence of religion in American colleges and universities was viewed as a natural concomitant of modernization, and it was generally seen as a necessary or even a good thing. In recent years, Christian scholars such as George Marsden and James Burtchaell have offered a new interpretation of that history, arguing that the marginalization of religion in higher education has been lamentable and assigning the blame to institutional leaders, not to the inexorable forces of modernization.

Of course, not all Christian colleges have been secularized. Notre Dame, Baylor, Valparaiso, St. Olaf, Wheaton and Calvin are among the schools that have maintained a robust relation to their sponsoring religious heritages.


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